Before you get a guinea pig, it’s important to think about a few things. For example, whether you have the time and space to give the pet a good life, whether you can afford it, and whether you can commit to looking after the guinea pig for the duration of their life.
Though it’s not something that you’ll want to think about, knowing the guinea pig lifespan is important because it’ll allow you to properly prepare for having one as a pet.
How long do guinea pigs live?
Answering this question is difficult because, as with all creatures, there’s no hard and fast age that they’ll live to. It’ll depend on various factors, such as the genetics of the animal, how well they’re looked after, and so on. We can give approximate answers, however.
So, what is a guinea pig life expectancy? Around five to eight years. It’s important to note that this is only the average lifespan -- some won’t live to see their fifth birthday, while others will live long into their second decade on earth. In fact, the world record is held by a guinea pig from the UK, which lived to nearly fifteen years. Impressive!
Aside from how well they’re looked after, the thing that’ll most influence the lifespan of your guinea pig will be the breed. There are some breeds that tend to live longer than others. For example, a hairless guinea pig will live longer than a long-haired guinea pig (again, we’re talking averages here).
You’re going to have a big say in your guinea pig lifespan. If you feed it well, then it’ll have what it needs to live for as long as possible. It’s important that your pet has a balanced diet. Since guinea pigs can’t produce vitamin c, you may want to get some supplements that’ll compliment your pet’s meals.
One underrated thing that influences how well your guinea pig can stave off illness is how warm they are. They’re more sensitive to the temperature than other creatures. If they get too hot, then they could experience heat-stroke. As a general rule, you should try to keep the temperature stable -- around room temperature is absolutely fine. Be mindful of those cold winter days and nights.
Trips to the vet
Finally, remember that it’s vital that you take your pet to the vet. A regular check-up can be worth its weight in gold, because it can highlight potential problems before they become big issues.
An experienced vet will be able to flag up any issues at the beginning (for example, if the guinea pig is being over/under-fed). They can also help to treat minor issues that could develop into something serious if they’re not treated early on (such as infections).